Monday, August 17, 2009

Abstract Index Playlist - August 12/09

I had the privilege of speaking with Amon Tobin the other day for an upcoming feature on his side project Two Fingers.

The project came about when he and longtime mate Joe Doubleclick Chapman got together to write some straightforward pop songs. Lady Gaga had better watch her back. This kind of pop is both successful as a vehicle for vocals (as with thier first album) and as a extension of Tobin's careful sample mosaics.

First, there's the beats. If you liked The Bug's album earlier last year (and he's on hand to contribute remixes to the current single "Bad Girl" featuring Ce'Cile), you'll find much to love in the unfussy, dancehall-centric drum patterns and Hoovering basslines that threaten to rip a hole in the space-time continuum. Tobin's always been good with bass sounds, but with Two Fingers, such sounds are more overwhelming given the relative paucity of ingredients.

Though there are fewer samples in this project than in Tobin's ridiculously plotted out solo albums, the way in which they are sequenced coaxes unlikely melodies out of disparate, often pan-Asian, sources. The way in which these samples thread together adds a subtle non-linearity to the grooves, but never enough to detract from the simplicty of each track. Tobin told me that these instrumentals took shape before, during and after the vocal album. Some songs are straight up versions of the vocal tracks, others are complete enough compositions on their own. Tobin agreed that it was a Bunny Lee like process, even if it is quite rightly termed an instrumental disc and not a dub album. (We had a laugh when I asked him when the Tommy McCook versions were coming out - saxophonist McCook, as mixed by King Tubby, was one of Lee's typical partners-in-version during the mid-70s)

This 22 track (!) album is coming out in limited edition release on September 8. Which is just a few weeks away. Ugh.


society girl - m. ashral feat nahid akhtah (finders keepers)
el son de victoria - hilario duran (waxing deep)
come carry the day - henry threadgill (sony)
subway rhythm - two fingers (paper bag)
esp orange - bleupulp (cccltd)
waist deep in saigon - david sait & gino robair (apprise)
saxion - geordie haley (no label)
for you - claudia quintet (cuneiform)
subnarkotisch - kammerflimmer kollektief (staubgold)
taqsim - khedayer bin kessab (honest jons)
ghati nen el bal – rached kabbaj (barbarity)
chegret – tinariwen (outside)
sandiya - brahim belkani (drag city)
baldamore - hadouk trio (naive)
nao ta se entender - dred mann-gi feat nell (akwabaa)
100% rootical - gaudi (interchill)
fathers call - king tubby (no label)
good sensi dub 2 - bush chemists (interchill)
tuff dub - citizen sound feat prince blanco (vx)
smiling faces sometimes - tamlins (mango)
i am doing my thing - delroy wilson (pressure sounds)
rock me in dub - thompson all stars (trojan)
throw some dub - michael rose/twilight circus (m)

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